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getting bad blisters

Discussion in 'Orchestral Technique [DB]' started by Harry Grossman, Apr 15, 2010.


  1. Harry Grossman

    Harry Grossman

    Apr 9, 2010
    VA
    i think it might be my technique. i play with the bass facing forward and i play with my index-finger (thats where the blister is) with the side opposite the fingernail against the string. the blister really hurts. help? thanks!
     
  2. crusie

    crusie

    Oct 19, 2009
    Djursland, Denmark
    not sure I get the "bass facomg forward" part - but play with at least 2 fingers I'd say index and middle finger - it should release some of the work of the index finger. also - make sure you don't push too hard - it doesn't sound too well (unless that's the sound you go for) and hurts even more. besides that - it comes with practice - most people here who play with their fingers will tell you how much it hurt when they started and today they have like 2 leather ends on their fingers.
     
  3. Harry Grossman

    Harry Grossman

    Apr 9, 2010
    VA
    well i mean its on my hip and the bridge isnt parallell to my body. and ive been playing for almost 4 years, how long will it take?thanks!
     
  4. crusie

    crusie

    Oct 19, 2009
    Djursland, Denmark
    been playing bass since the age of 9? it really depends on how much you practice - if you practice an hour+ each day it shouldn't take too long. as for how you hold your bass - it seems a bit odd to me but I don't believe that's your problem.

    as regarding the blisters I don't get them anymore but I can still get sour fingertips after a long gig
     
  5. There's some clarification needed here. Are you talking about left hand when fingering or right hand playing pizz?

    DP
     
  6. I think ow he plays, is that its perpendicular to his body. So the body is on his hip, the neck instead of being parallel to the body, going out into the air? Do I have that right?
     
  7. Exploiter8

    Exploiter8 Demons run when a good man goes to war

    Jan 18, 2010
    Midwest
    Commercial FREE!
    Sensitive fingers here! I've developed a very light touch over the years. Light flatwounds help the fretting hand while alternating the index and middle on the other works for me. Winter and the dry air is especially rough for me. I use hand lotion and sleep with gloves to keep my hands moisturized and my fingertips from cracking open and bleeding. Try using a pick. I did for awhile but got away from doing so, and now it just feels foreign. Maybe I should've been a safe-cracker!

    X8
     
  8. Harry Grossman

    Harry Grossman

    Apr 9, 2010
    VA
    im talking about my right hand plucking, and what i mean is like, if you take the bass so that the flat backside is against your stomach,then shift it left against ur hip, thats how. sorry if its not clear
     
  9. try using nickel plated or coated strings and make sure you are using your index AND middle finger to pluck as well!
     
  10. Now we're cookin!! The short-term answer for blisters is a packet of PLASTIC (not cloth) Bandaids (adhesive strips used to cover small cuts to fingers,etc). These will keep you playing.

    The longer term answer is (1) look at your pizz. techniques and (2)toughen your skin into callouses, helped by dabbing with denatured alcohol (we call it Methylated Spirits here) after playing. First you have to let the blisters heal.

    It sounds like you are perhaps a jazz guy. There may be better advice in the Jazz Technique forum.

    Cheers....

    DP
     
  11. Harry Grossman

    Harry Grossman

    Apr 9, 2010
    VA
    well i do love jazz, but i do more elec. bass for jazz. i love orchestra too, though
     
  12. Alcohol and bandaids, that's the solution. And softer strings if you want, but that of course will change the tone.

    Also, you should not be 'plucking' the strings, but more letting your finger slip off the side... that's hard to describe properly. Pull the string sideways with the side of your finger, and let it slip off.
     
  13. Harry Grossman

    Harry Grossman

    Apr 9, 2010
    VA
    yea, thats what i meant, but i didnt know how to describe it :spit:
     
  14. robobass

    robobass

    Aug 1, 2005
    Cologne, Germany
    Private Inventor - Bass Capos
    I don't know about alcohol and bandaids, but using the side of your finger is key. By engaging more flesh you spread out the friction and get better sound as well. Also, the stiffness of the bass is a factor. I can pluck my 4-stringers hard for any amount of time without getting sore, but the 5-string Poellmann I use in the orchestra can raise a blister before the first break in a pops rehearsal. Going to softer and more flexible strings might help. You might also look into a raised saddle to reduce tension.
     

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